My Horny Hump Day post is here.
It’s time again for the monthly meeting of The Insecure Writer’s Support Group, which convenes the first Wednesday of every month.
I’ve decided to go for it and try entering this year’s PitchWars, hosted by Brenda Drake. While I’m still confident that going indie is the best venue for many of my books, it can’t hurt to try a contest with one of my shorter books. I’m not anti-agent, even if it seems a lot of traditionally published books in recent years are kind of cookie-cutter and bland, not very distinctive or line-breaking.
I’ve found a few mentors on the list who are interested in historical MG, which I really think could still fit The Very First. It’s only 60,000 words, set over only three months, and has young characters dealing with rather un-adult situations. Sparky (real name Katherine) struggles to learn how to become a real American girl without compromising her Jewish faith, while her new best friend Cinni learns there’s more than one way to be a real American.
I have to roll my eyes at how the agents who dogpiled me in a pitchfest somewhere else a few years ago took issue with a Jewish girl named Katherine. Um, yeah, because it was totally unheard of for German Jews to give their kids secular names instead of hideous shtetl monikers like Faiga, Shternie, and Gitty! And they had no room to harp on that if they’ve liked or represented contemporaries with clearly predated naming trends, like Aidan, Kayden, Mikayla, and Madison!
Also huge eyeroll at how they said it seemed a lot like American Girl. Yeah, the concept might be similar, but it certainly wasn’t inspired at all by American Girl, and the book is a lot longer and more complex than the short American Girl stories! I know I’m biased, but I think it’s a cute, sweet story, and I’m really proud of how I undertook that significant rewrite and restructuring. It’s a myth that absolutely ALL books need rewritten to be good, but this is one of the books which really benefitted from a huge shake-up!
I’m still seeing very pitiful sales from the two books I’ve got out, and absolutely no sales from Kobo or Nook. The paltry sales I’ve made since May all come from Kindle. I’m realistic enough to understand not everyone who’s congratulated or wished me well plans to buy my books, but I kind of expect people who’ve expressed interest in reading them to have bought them. Are people waiting for physical copies?
I can see from the links clicked section of my sidebar that people have clearly been looking at the Amazon, Kobo, and Nook pages, yet I’m not seeing any sort of corresponding sales increases. I’m sticking to the prices of $4.99 and $7.99, based on the length. I’m not going to put myself in the $2.99 ghetto, or give my hard work away for only 99 cents.
A lot of people say one shouldn’t expect sales to pick up till at least the third book. And as a music-lover, I think of how a band can be floundering, not hitting it big or having really sunk in popularity, and then along comes an album like Tommy or a song like “Ordinary World” to save them. Maybe my first Russian historical will be the one to save me in November, or the first book released next year?